Extreme Ops

Bomb Rating: 

That's what really bad movies sometimes do to you. You walk out of the theater and it's like the last 90 minutes of your life just vanished.

It's been maybe three days since this film came out and I've forgotten nearly everything about it. I do remember that it's basically 90 minutes of X-gamers skiing, boarding and clowning around and then being chased by some on-the-run Bosnian warlord, but I'm hard-pressed to recall any of the details. That's what really bad movies sometimes do to you. You walk out of the theater and it's like the last 90 minutes of your life just vanished. It's kind of like "Solaris" where the planet creates a new person: When I walked out of "Extreme Ops" I was like a new Mr. Cranky who couldn't remember anything that had happened in my life up until that point, but I had some vague recollections of things. It's like that.

Don't accuse me of not seeing this film because I did. For instance, I can tell you that Rufus Sewell plays a commercial director named Ian. He has an annoying partner named Mark (Heino Ferch), who insists they film a ski stunt in front of an avalanche. To do said stunt, Ian has gathered together an Olympic skier, Chloe (Bridgette Wilson-Sampras), and a couple of snowboarders, Silo (Joe Abolom) and Kittie (Jana Pallaske). Will (Devon Sawa) is part of the crew and is trying to get into Kittie's pants, but isn't very successful because he's flabby. The central emotional issue of the film is that Chloe isn't really an extreme skier and loses her confidence after a fall. It's not like she breaks a pelvis or something. Her skis come off. She puts them back on. She keeps going.

Of the 90 minutes that comprise the film, about 80 minutes consist of these people skiing and boarding about. They go to some extremely remote hotel that sits on top of a mountain, but isn't quite finished. You can only get to it via a really slow gondola. Then, suddenly, in the last ten minutes, this Bosnian warlord realizes that these people with the cameras have taken a picture of him and now he wants to kill them because he's afraid somebody will find out he's there. He actually thinks they're CIA. He doesn't seem to consider that if they were CIA, they might have made a phone call during the hour or two it takes for him to decide to kill them. So he chases them around the mountain in a helicopter shooting at them.

Don't ask why the Bosnian warlord didn't just prevent these camera-toting troublemakers from coming up to his hotel in the first place. Just cherish the fact that his anger offers these troublemakers the opportunity to use their awesome snowboarding and skiing skills to outwit and outmaneuver the Bosnian warlord, his helicopter, and his machine guns. If only we had sent some radical snowboarders to the Balkans ten years ago, we could have put a stop to that entire war business in nothing flat.

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